Kendall College School of Culinary Arts has named Matthew Anieri, of York Community High School in Elmhurst, Ill., the Grand Prize Winner of the national online 2013 Kendall Cooks Challenge competition. Matthew was recognized for his “Stuffed Poblano Peppers with Spicy Salmon and Spanish Style Quinoa” recipe. For winning, Matthew will attend a weeklong Culinary Camp at Kendall College this summer where he will take classes in Advanced Culinary, Basic Baking & Pastry and Food Photography and Styling.
The Facebook-based cooking contest invited high-school students across the U.S. to develop their culinary skills through a series of four online, interactive recipe competitions throughout the year, which initially launched in September 2012. During each of the four rounds, students were introduced by video to three mystery ingredients to use in an original recipe. Notable Kendall College alumni Chef Jose Garces, Chef Beverly Kim, Chef Shawn McClain and Chef Mindy Segal each hosted one video. Students then submitted their recipes, photos of their finished dishes, and explanations of why they picked their dishes to Kendall’s Facebook page. A total of 75 students from across the country entered for a chance to win.
“It was exciting to be able to share this honor with Matthew as winner of the first Kendall Cooks Challenge,” said Koetke. “We had so many outstanding recipes, but what excited me most as an instructor, was to see the thinking, creativity and passion that went into each original dish. As a leading local culinary institution, that’s the goal we live every day.”
Matthew’s recipe used Salmon, Poblano Chillies, and Quinoa as the mystery ingredients, which earned him First Place in the Third Round. Judges considered taste, appearance, creativity, appropriate use of mystery basket ingredients, and listing exact Ingredient amounts and clear instructions. His recipe, alongside three other Finalists’ recipes, was then recreated by Kendall culinary students based on his instructions, to become the winning dish. “I wanted to make something different than a traditional entrée with sides so I decided to make a stuffed pepper,” Matthew said, in response to the inspiration behind his winning dish. “I’ve been practicing the FCCLA Spanish rice recipe so I decided to adapt that to make Spanish style Quinoa. I pulled in additional Mexican flavors to complement the dish.”
In addition to attending a Culinary Camp, Matthew will receive a personalized chef’s coat and an appearance on a future online episode of “Kendall Cooks with Chef Koetke.” All First Prize winners received a professional knife kit provided by Northwestern Cutlery.
For Mathew’s recipe and more information on the Kendall Cooks Challenge, visit http://culinary.kendall.edu/about/kendall-cooks-challenge.